The San Diego Padres came to town this week and swept a three-game series.
The Padres have earned four of their five total wins this season against the Dodgers and the Blue Crew has now lost four straight to drop to 7-8. Getting men on base wasn’t a problem in the series, the Dodgers had double-digit hits in two of the three games, but the team’s season-long struggles with runners in scoring position continued. The Dodgers left 30 men on base in the series.
Like Beavis and Butthead, the struggle to score continues.
The Boys in Blue are batting .171 with RISP, second-worst in the NL, ahead of only the Cubs. What went wrong for the Dodgers?
The Dodgers’ infield kind of represented the overall theme for the Dodgers in the series — guys got on base, but no one was really coming around to score.
Adrian Gonzalez continued his impressive start to the season, going 4-for-10 with a double and a pair of RBIs. Gonzalez is now hitting .407, second best in the National League.
A.J. Ellis also had a solid series going 5-for-10, including a game-tying RBI single in Monday night’s 6-3 loss.
Mark Ellis played all three games in the series, going 4-for-13 with a sac-fly RBI in Wednesday night’s 9-2 blowout.
Those three guys were 13-for-33 (.393) in the series, and only drove in three runs?
Nobody was able to bring them home?
Justin Sellers also started all three games at shortstop. He went 1-for-8 in the series and is hitting only .179 on the season, but Don Mattingly has stated there will be no change at shortstop for the foreseeable future.
Third base was also a wasteland for the Dodgers in the series.
Luis Cruz‘s struggles continued, he went 1-for-6 with a run scored in the first two games of the series, and his batting average now sitting at .103.
Nick Punto spelled Cruz on Wednesday and went 0-for-4.
Crawford went 5-for-13 with a double and a pair of runs scored in the series. His .375 batting average is good for fifth in the National League.
Matt Kemp was 2-for-8 with a double and a run scored in the first two games before getting a much needed day off on Sunday. Kemp would enter the game in the seventh inning as a pinch hitter and strike out. He would later drive in Andre Ethier on a sac-fly in the bottom of the ninth, but with the Dodgers down 7-2 and on their final out, the run hardly mattered.
Ditto for Andre, who went only 1-for-9 in the series. Although he collected a walk in each game, four total in the series. The run he scored on Kemp’s sac-fly in the bottom of the ninth was the only run Andre accounted for this week.
Matt and Andre went a combined 3-for-18 in the series, perhaps why Crawford, Mark Ellis, and Gonzalez never came around to score.
STARTING PITCHING: D
It was a complete and utter disaster for the Dodgers’ starting pitching against the Padres this week. The starting pitching has been a strength for the Blue Crew this season and their 3.36 team ERA is still second best in the National League.
Chad Billingsley was decent enough on Monday night. He pitched six innings, giving up three runs, with three strikeouts and two walks. Billingsley would leave to a 3-3 tie, but the Dodgers’ bullpen let that game slip away.
It was a train wreck for Chris Capuano on Tuesday. Filling in for the injured Zack Greinke, Capuano got hammered in the first inning for four runs and strained his calf while covering first base in the second. Capuano gave up five runs in only two innings of work, and five Dodgers relievers were left to deal with a 5-0 deficit.
Capuano fell to 0-1 on the season.
Even Clayton Kershaw couldn’t stop the bleeding on Wednesday. Kershaw got tagged for three home runs in Wednesday’s 7-2 defeat. Kershaw didn’t make it through the sixth, lasting only 5.1 innings, giving up five runs, three earned, with five strikeouts and four walks.
It was Kershaw’s worst start of the season and dropped him to 2-2.
There were some good performances here and there, but overall it was a rough three days for the Dodgers’ bullpen.
Ronald Belisario took the loss Monday night, loading the bases without recording an out, and giving up two earned runs. Belisario dropped to 0-2 on the season.
J.P. Howell also gave up a run in the ninth on Monday.
However, trailing 5-1, the Dodgers would never make up that deficit.
Rodriguez, Jansen, and Belisario pitched 2-2/3 scoreless innings of relief Wednesday night, but J.P. Howell struggled for a second straight outing giving up two runs in an inning of work.
However, again faced with a 5-1 deficit late in the game, the Dodgers would not recover.
The Blue Crew will try and regroup with a day off Thursday before heading to Baltimore for the first interleague series of the year with the Orioles. The Dodgers last traveled to Baltimore back in 2002 and took two of three at Camden Yards.
The Orioles are 7-7 and will be playing the rubber game of a three-game set with the Rays Thursday evening. The Dodgers and the Orioles only World Series match up was back in 1966, a sweep by the O’s.